How to easily update your VMware server to ESXi 6.0 Update 1b

Posted by Paul Braren on Jan 7 2016 (updated on Mar 31 2018) in
  • ESXi
  • Virtualization
  • HowTo
  • HomeLab
  • Important Update - On Mar 20 2018, VMware VMSA-2018-0004.3 announced that CVE-2017-5715 (Spectre-2) mitigation is now included in the latest patch that you should be using instead of the older patch featured in the original article below. You'll find the newer article that features an even easier update method here:

    Article below as it originally appeared.

    If you don't have a commercial VMware license, and instead are using a trial, free, or EVALExperience ESXi 6.0 or ESXi 6.0 Update 1, you won't be able to easily download the 6.0 Update 1b ISO directly. You're not entitled. Silly, I know. Worry not though, since this article has you covered. Takes about 10 minutes total. Basically you paste two commands, wait for the automated download and patch process, then finish up with a host reboot.

    Important Note - update your VCSA before your ESXi!

    FYI, you are supposed to update your vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA) before you update your ESXi hosts, for the reasons VMware explains here, and William Lam here. Here's the easy (published Jan 12 2016) way to do it, detailed at TinkerTry:


    The command syntax for updating ESXi 6.0 was easily figured out, thanks to prior work by Andreas Peetz and William Lam!

    Before you begin, you'll first need to carefully review William Lam's warning:

    Disclaimer: This method assumes you can install the default ESXi Image Profile with no additional drivers or packages, else you may have connectivity issue after the upgrade. If you still need to customize the ESXi Image Profile before installation, you will still need to use something like Image Builder and then upload that to your online depot.

    ...and Andreas Peetz warning:

    Important note: Before doing this please check whether you rely on one of the NIC drivers (e.g. Realtek) that were blacklisted in ESXi 6.0. You then need to carry out an additional step before doing the upgrade - see my earlier post (section 2) for details.

    For my SuperServer Workstation, I didn't have to worry about VIBs: the stock drivers built into 6.0 are all I need to succeed. Even if I do need AHCI or NVMe VIBs in the future, I can just re-add such VIBs after similar future upgrades, or even inject them into a custom ISO.

    What's convenient about the below method is that you don't have to worry about separately downloading the ESXi ISO:

    Name: VMware-VMvisor-Installer-201601001-3380124.x86_64.iso
    Release Date: 2016-01-07
    Build Number: 3380124

    Download and apply the 6.0 Update 1b patch directly from the VMware Online Depot

    1. Open an SSH session (PuTTY) to your ESXi 6.0 (or ESXi 6.0 Update 1) server
      (if you forgot to enable SSH, here's how)
    2. Put your system into maintenance mode, or ensure you've set your ESXi host to automatically gracefully shutdown all VMs upon host reboot
    3. Paste the 1st line below into into your SSH session, then hit enter. Repeat for the 2nd line, waiting somewhere around 1 to 6 minutes for it to finish up, depending partly on the speed of the ESXi's connection to the internet, and the speed of the storage media that ESXi is installed on:
      esxcli network firewall ruleset set -e true -r httpClient
      esxcli software profile update -p ESXi-6.0.0-20160104001-standard -d
    4. This 3rd line below is optional, use it if you wish to return the firewall status to how it was before you began this procedure, paste:
      esxcli network firewall ruleset set -e false -r httpClient
    5. If you turned on maintenance mode earlier, remember to turn it back off now.

    6. Type "reboot" and hit return (to restart your ESXi server).

    7. Download and install VMware vSphere Client 6.0 Update 1b. If you have a prior 6.x version on your Windows system that's doing vSphere administration, this installer will automatically your existing 6.x install to Build 3249451. Download VMware vSphere Client 6.0 Update 1b here:

    8. After the reboot is done, it would be a good idea to test login using both the vSphere Client and the vSphere Web Client, to be sure everthing seems to be working right.

    You're done!

    Special thanks to VMware ESXi Patch Tracker by Andreas Peetz at the VMware Front Experience Blog.

    Here's how my upgrade from build 3073146 to 3380124 looked, right after the 3 minute download/patch.
    Yep, it worked!

    That's it! When the reboot is complete, you'll see for yourself that you now have the latest ESXi, Build 3380124, as pictured above. Now you have more spare time to read more TinkerTry articles!

    By the way, you could use VMware Update Manager on a Windows system or VM, but for one-off upgrades typical in a small home lab, pasting these 2 lines of code is pretty easy.


    How to update your VMware server to ESXi 6.0 Update 1b the easy way!

    Alernative method (not really simpler, just different)

    Update Jan 08 2016

    Just in case it's of interest, right after my successful upgrade from ESXi 6.0 Update 1a to Update 1b, it echos all the VIBs that were installed, removed, and skipped. Figured I'd do a cut-and-paste for you, right from the PuTTY session you see pictured above. Just in case you're upgrade-curious, and wondering if your driver package would be touched.

    If you do a Browser Ctrl+F for NVMe, you'll notice that there does seem to be a new NVMe driver listed below installed called:

    Should be interesting to see if performance has changed, see also the recent, closely-related TinkerTry article:

    and many other NVMe articles.

    Update Result:

    Message: The update completed successfully, but the system needs to be rebooted for the changes to be effective.
    Reboot Required: true

    VIBs Installed:

    VMware_bootbank_ehci-ehci-hcd_1.0-3vmw.600.1.26.3380124, VMware_bootbank_esx-base_6.0.0-1.26.3380124, VMware_bootbank_lsi-mr3_6.605.08.00-7vmw.600.1.17.3029758, VMware_bootbank_lsi-msgpt3_06.255.12.00-8vmw.600.1.17.3029758, VMware_bootbank_lsu-lsi-mpt2sas-plugin_1.0.0-4vmw.600.1.17.3029758, VMware_bootbank_misc-drivers_6.0.0-1.26.3380124, VMware_bootbank_net-e1000e_3.2.2.1-1vmw.600.1.26.3380124, VMware_bootbank_net-tg3_3.131d.v60.4-2vmw.600.1.26.3380124, VMware_bootbank_nvme_1.0e.0.35-1vmw.600.1.17.3029758, VMware_bootbank_sata-ahci_3.0-22vmw.600.1.17.3029758, VMware_bootbank_vsanhealth_6.0.0-3000000., VMware_bootbank_xhci-xhci_1.0-3vmw.600.1.26.3380124, VMware_locker_tools-light_6.0.0-1.26.3380124

    VIBs Removed:

    VMware_bootbank_ehci-ehci-hcd_1.0-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_esx-base_6.0.0-0.11.2809209, VMware_bootbank_lsi-mr3_6.605.08.00-6vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_lsi-msgpt3_06.255.12.00-7vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_lsu-lsi-mpt2sas-plugin_1.0.0-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_misc-drivers_6.0.0-0.11.2809209, VMware_bootbank_net-e1000e_2.5.4-6vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-tg3_3.131d.v60.4-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_nvme_1.0e.0.35-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_sata-ahci_3.0-21vmw.600.0.11.2809209, VMware_bootbank_xhci-xhci_1.0-2vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_locker_tools-light_6.0.0-0.11.2809209

    VIBs Skipped:

    VMWARE_bootbank_mtip32xx-native_3.8.5-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-amd_0.3.10-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-atiixp_0.4.6-4vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-cmd64x_0.2.5-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-hpt3x2n_0.3.4-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-pdc2027x_1.0-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-serverworks_0.4.3-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-sil680_0.4.8-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-via_0.3.3-2vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_block-cciss_3.6.14-10vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_cpu-microcode_6.0.0-0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_elxnet_10.2.309.6v-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_emulex-esx-elxnetcli_10.2.309.6v-0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_esx-dvfilter-generic-fastpath_6.0.0-0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_esx-tboot_6.0.0-0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_esx-xserver_6.0.0-0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ima-qla4xxx_2.02.18-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ipmi-ipmi-devintf_39.1-4vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ipmi-ipmi-msghandler_39.1-4vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ipmi-ipmi-si-drv_39.1-4vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_lpfc_10.2.309.8-2vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_lsu-hp-hpsa-plugin_1.0.0-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_lsu-lsi-lsi-mr3-plugin_1.0.0-2vmw.600.0.11.2809209, VMware_bootbank_lsu-lsi-lsi-msgpt3-plugin_1.0.0-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_lsu-lsi-megaraid-sas-plugin_1.0.0-2vmw.600.0.11.2809209, VMware_bootbank_lsu-lsi-mptsas-plugin_1.0.0-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_misc-cnic-register_1.78.75.v60.7-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-bnx2_2.2.4f.v60.10-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-bnx2x_1.78.80.v60.12-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-cnic_1.78.76.v60.13-2vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-e1000_8.0.3.1-5vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-enic_2.1.2.38-2vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-forcedeth_0.61-2vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-igb_5., VMware_bootbank_net-ixgbe_3., VMware_bootbank_net-mlx4-core_1.9.7.0-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-mlx4-en_1.9.7.0-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-nx-nic_5.0.621-5vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_net-vmxnet3_1.1.3.0-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_nmlx4-core_3.0.0.0-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_nmlx4-en_3.0.0.0-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_nmlx4-rdma_3.0.0.0-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_ohci-usb-ohci_1.0-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_qlnativefc_2.0.12.0-5vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_rste_2.0.2.0088-4vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_sata-ata-piix_2.12-10vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_sata-sata-nv_3.5-4vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_sata-sata-promise_2.12-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_sata-sata-sil24_1.1-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_sata-sata-sil_2.3-4vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_sata-sata-svw_2.3-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-aacraid_1.1.5.1-9vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-adp94xx_1.0.8.12-6vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-aic79xx_3.1-5vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-bnx2fc_1.78.78.v60.8-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-bnx2i_2.78.76.v60.8-1vmw.600.0.11.2809209, VMware_bootbank_scsi-fnic_1.5.0.45-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-hpsa_6.0.0.44-4vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-ips_7.12.05-4vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-megaraid-mbox_2.20.5.1-6vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-megaraid-sas_6.603.55.00-2vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-megaraid2_2.00.4-9vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-mpt2sas_19.00.00.00-1vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-mptsas_4.23.01.00-9vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-mptspi_4.23.01.00-9vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_scsi-qla4xxx_5.01.03.2-7vmw.600.0.0.2494585, VMware_bootbank_uhci-usb-uhci_1.0-3vmw.600.0.0.2494585

    Update Jan 12 2016

    Now available, step-by-step with video:

    Update Jan 13 2016

    If you're upgrading to 6.0U1b and already have some VM templates built on an earlier release, you'll want to read this:

    Here's the VMware Tools 10.0.5 download site:

    Update Feb 01 2016

    You'll see a comment by willbill below that he got the free version of the ESXi hypervisor successfully updated to 6.0 Update 1b, using the above "easy way." This is good!

    For folks using the free version of the hypervisor, you are able to get slightly back-level version of the vSphere Web Client from the VMware vSphere Client download site that doesn't require login. Thanks again, willbill!

    Notice also that you have the Download vSphere Client for Windows link when you point your browser to your ESXi server, but it just gets you the slightly older VMware-viclient-all-6.0.0.exe which is product version

    See also at TinkerTry

    See also